What does Hidden text mean in marketing terminology?

Hidden text

Hidden text is text that website visitors can't see but can be read by search engines, thus allowing it to influence the content of a website’s ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs). It is normally hidden by making the text color the same as the background, cropping the text with the same color as the background, or setting the font size to 0. Hidden text is often used to bypass search engine algorithms, by providing content and keywords that are easily read by search engines, but not visible to the regular website visitor.

What are the benefits of hidden text?

Special HTML tags and attributes can be used within hidden text, so it can help search engine optimizers provide more information on their website's content than what is visible in the normal HTML codes. This can be beneficial for optimizing websites for search engines, because it provides additional targeted keywords and descriptions about a website’s content without cluttering a page's design or text.

What are the risks of using hidden text?

Using hidden text can be a risky tactic, as most search engines have zero-tolerance policies for hidden text. If caught using hidden text, a website can be delisted or permanently banned from search engine results. Search engine algorithms are designed to detect hidden text, and it can be very hard to detect problems with hidden text since it is not meant to be seen by website visitors.

What can I do with hidden text?

To make sure that the use of hidden text is compliant with the guidelines set by most search engines, use hidden text in a way that helps search engine crawlers comprehend the content of your website, rather than trying to manipulate search engine results. This includes hiding meta tags, titles, descriptions, and keywords in the HTML markup of a website. Be sure to use proper keywords that accurately reflect the content of the website, not to stuff it with unnecessary or irrelevant words.

What are the best practices for using hidden text?

When using hidden text, be sure to follow the best practices set by search engine guidelines:

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• Make sure the use of hidden text is compliant with search engine guidelines.

• Always hide meta tags, titles, descriptions, and keywords in the HTML markup.

• Avoid using irrelevant keywords or terms that don’t accurately represent the content of your website.

• Don’t use hidden text to manipulate search engine results.

• Be sure to include ALT text and ALT attributes on images to allow search engine crawlers to accurately index and understand the subject of the image.

• Don’t hide too much text, or it might cause your page to load slower.

• Use proper formatting and create hierarchy for text for search engine crawlers to understand.

• Avoid using JavaScript or Flash to try to hide text, as it won't be indexed by search engine crawlers.


Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Experts

"Web pages employing hidden text tactics are still in danger of receiving a manual action from Google. A manual action is when someone at Google reviews a site and judges it to be in violation of Google’s guidelines. "

Search Engine Experts